Auditions for Other Desert Cities and Venus in Fur are on Saturday! Here’s a quick word from the directors of each show:
Much like our country, the family in Other Desert Cities wrestles with deep political division, pitting children against parents, siblings against siblings and each person’s perceptions and memories against another’s.
But at the heart of the play is a family’s desperate love for one another. This family of sharp-witted, sharp-tongued smart alecks are engaged in a war of wills and in spite of their differences, in spite of the secrets they keep and in spite of the words they hurl at one another, there is fierce loyalty and love. And that’s what makes this play fascinating, moving and meaningful.
Plot-Thomas Novachek is the writer-director of a new play opening in New York City, an adaptation of the 1870 novel Venus in Furs by Austrian author Leopold von Sacher-Masoch, which inspired the term Masochism. He is on the telephone lamenting the inadequacies of all the actresses who showed up that day to audition for the lead character, Wanda von Dunayev. Suddenly, at the last minute, a new actress, Vanda Jordan, bursts in, the exemplar of every fault he has decried: needy, crude, compliant, desperate. She convinces him to read through his play, she as Wanda and he as Severin von Kushemski. During this reading, Vanda shows astonishing insights into the novel and her character and the balance of power shifts as the actress establishes total dominance over the director, exactly as in the novel.
1) If you haven’t memorized the monologue don’t pretend you have. I would rather you read the words the best you can than ab lib the material.
2) Make your first 15 seconds count. When you meet someone for the first time, don’t you make a lot of suppositions? We do too.
3) Be the 3 Cs. Be comfortable, charismatic and confident. Actors have to command attention. They have to be the most interesting people in a 1000 seat theater. Be someone that we want to get to know. If you can do that as yourself, I know you’ll also be able to do that in a character.
4) Don’t take the last audition times of the day. Casting is not an easy process, and at the end of the day, a creative team is grumpy, tired and wants to go home. The early actor gets the part. (Another reason to be scheduled early? You don’t have the rest of the day of actors to be compared to.)
5) Don’t start over. Screw up? Fight through it. And it probably wasn’t as bad as you thought. You’re more sensitive to it than we are.
6) Always audition. The best way to master auditioning is just like everything else. Do it over and over. You’ll get numb to the nerves. You’ll be able to be yourself. And you’ll get free practice!
Remember, we want you to be great. We’re pulling for you more than you can ever imagine.
Because a great audition, means a great cast, which means we’re one step closer to a great show.
To grab the Other Desert Cities audition packet, click here.
For the Venus in Fur audition packet, click here.
Sign up for an audition slot in the Playhouse Lobby, by calling 218-733-7555, or at auditions Saturday at the Conservatory (230 W Superior Street, Wells Fargo Building). See you at auditions!